Apr 11 2019

Erdoğan urges period of reconciliation after Sudanese president deposed

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan called for a period of reconciliation in Sudan after President Omar Hassan Bashir was ousted in a military coup on Thursday.

Erdoğan said he hoped the two countries would maintain close relations, which the Turkish president has worked to improve in recent years, the New York Times reported.

"My wish is that Sudan should succeed in this calmly ... and I believe it should start operating the normal democratic process," he said during a joint news conference with Burkina Faso’s President Roch Marc Christian Kabore in Ankara.

Bashir’s 30-year reign ended as it began – with a coup – after months of protests by Sudanese civilians expressing their anger at the country’s economic situation.

However, Erdoğan expressed his concerns that citizens of the country could suffer from the removal of the Sudanese president.

“These countries have suffered a lot from this type of coup, and every coup has caused a lot of bloodshed,” Erdoğan said.

Bashir was relegated to international pariah status after being charged with genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in Darfur by the International Criminal Court in 2008.

Erdoğan, however, has welcomed relations with the Sudanese president, particularly since 2017, when he became the first Turkish president to visit Khartoum.

On that occasion Turkey signed deals worth approximately $650 million with Sudan, including the lease of Suakin, an island in the Red Sea, for 99 years.

Last year Turkey hosted Bashir in Istanbul for a conference of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.

On Thursday the Sudanese army announced that the country would enter a two-year transitional phase after the removal of Bashir.

Defence Minister Awad Mohamed Ahmed Ibn Auf said Bashir had been arrested and was being held in a “safe place.” Reuters quoted Sudanese sources as saying the former president was under heavy guard in the presidential residence.

Erdoğan said he had so far received no reliable reports about Bashir’s whereabouts.

https://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2019/04/11/world/europe/11reuters-sudan-politics-turkey.html